31 August 2022

For millennia there have been many different religions, beliefs, spiritual paths and methods used for discovering, understanding and reaching the creator of this universe. Any attempt of the mind to describe something that exist beyond the field of our sensory perceptions and usual thinking proves to be a difficult undertaking. Religion, philosophy and science alike tried and continue to try to solve this mystery, or sometimes to disprove it altogether. In our modern world Divine creation versus random evolution is a debate fiercer than ever. 

In the past, God was ascribed many names, powers, functions, descriptions and epithets, according to epoch, culture and intellectual and technological advancements. 

Some say that reciting the names of God, or deeply understanding his characteristics will gradually take one to paradise. Could this in itself be a path, a way of finding God, as efficient as meditation, introspection, devotion, sacrifice and others?

Some say that reciting the names of God, or deeply understanding his characteristics will gradually take one to paradise.

In Christianity God is defined as an enumeration of his attributes, amongst which three are the most important; omniscient, omnipotent and omnibenevolent.  As such these attributes are called incommunicable, they only belong to God. God manifests absolute compassion, infinite intelligence, and always loves and takes care of the created. 

In Islam God is also defined as omniscient, omnipotent and completely infinite yet beyond any anthropomorphic form, as it transcends gender and any shape. God is timeless, eternal, infinite; it represents the beginning, the cause of everything and also the end, it is the “ancient” One, there is no before or after. 

We find various gods and goddesses in other traditions, for example in Hinduism there are hypostasies or descriptions of Shiva, the supreme consciousness, as well as various goddesses which are his manifesting powers. In his aspect of Brahman, the Creator, he is transcendent, unmanifested and immanent, while in his manifested form he is the Good Shepherd, the Cosmic Dancer, the united universal Man & Woman, as well as many other hypostasies. 

The word “attribute” comes from the Latin “atributum” which is a derivate of the verb “atribuere”, translated as “to attribute”. An attribute is an essential characteristic or a distinctive trait of something in particular: a human being, an object, a phenomenon or even God. 

We can distinguish between non-essential attributes, e.g. skin colour or physical shape in the case of a person, and essential attributes which designate one or more traits without which the phenomenon, object, person, or a divine being cannot exist or cannot even be known or thought about, e.g. self-awareness or cognition for a human being. 

The Godly Attributes are those characteristics, manifested as endless and enigmatic energies, which belong to the Godly Being, or God.

The Godly Attributes are those characteristics or traits, manifested as endless and enigmatic energies, which belong to the Godly Being, or God. Amongst such attributes we can mention Love, Kindness, Eternity, Compassion, Forgiveness, Omnipotence, Justice, and many more; without them God cannot be felt, understood, or even conceptualised.

The unique revelation in our school is that the Godly Attributes are and will be in eternity free, endless and beneficial subtle energies, which never change. Because we, all people, were created by the Almighty in his likeness, and because we can also recognize God by means of his Godly Attributes, we can infer that these Godly Attributes are accessible and can be known and felt directly and intuitively inside our own being. 

For this to happen, we need to create favourable and adequate conditions which will trigger a process of resonance, a subtle energetic connection, with a specific Attribute. 

Harnessing this subtle sublime energy inside ourselves will lead to the appearance of a very specific and distinct inner state which will allow us to feel, to know and to fully participate in the objective and mysterious reality of that Godly Attribute. As long as this process of resonance, that maintains this subtle connection, is kept in optimal conditions, we continue to have access to this divine reality. This is not necessarily a form of meditation, but rather an ability to feel and become that energy, to manifest it at will, to stay tuned in to it for as long as we are capable of.

Any process of resonance contains in it a dual transmission: the first is quantitative – the more we resonate with a process, an emotion or a state, the more energy of the same type we attract in our being; the second is informational – there is knowledge, wisdom and information contained in that specific energy or frequency, in the same way a radio transmission contains information. Resonating with godly attributes will allow a gradual accumulation of knowledge and sometimes revelations and divine information will be rapidly downloaded into our consciousness.

Consequently, the outstanding result of this practice, of directly knowing and feeling the specific subtle energy of a godly attribute, is directly discovering God, feeling Him inside our being. Each attribute opens a gate to one of God”s infinite realities.

The Godly Attribute of Love is an easy and accessible example for all of us. We constantly feel and manifest love in various ways and for various reasons.  Knowing or not, the Godly Attribute of Love is behind all these manifestations of love, and we can say that we get closer to its divine nature when our love becomes most sacred, refined, unconditional and full of abnegation. It has inspired many sages, saints, and advanced spiritual practitioners to state that God is Love, and Love is the expression of God which manifest as an intense, endless, refined, and pure subtle energy.

The regular practice with the Godly Attributes will gradually reveal in our lives the mysterious presence of God, not only as a detached, above-all Being, but also as a caring and loving parent, who is constantly involved in every minute detail of its creation. 

Being a direct and un-mediated process, this spiritual experience becomes a proof of the existence of God, freeing us from the endless philosophical and intellectual debates. 

In time we will be able to resonate with more attributes, to keep them alive in our consciousness and to radiate them in our lives more and more. 

31 August 2022

What is a fear of living? It’s being pre-eminently afraid of dying. It is not doing what you came here to do, out of timidity and spinelessness. The antidote is to take full responsibility for yourself – for the time you take up and the space you occupy. If you don’t know what you’re here to do, then just do some good.”

– Maya Angelou

It takes courage to assume responsibility in life.  As children, parents usually take the weight of our actions and behaviour, but at some moment in our life, usually post teens, as part of a harmonious process of maturation, we must take on this responsibility. However, in today’s modern society ‘taking responsibility’ seems to have become confused, even lost as we encounter a culture of blame, complaints, hypersensitivity, and even in some cases leading to a kind of grown-up infantility, as we run away from assuming adulthood.

In ancient cultures and traditions, the transition into adulthood was marked by an initiatory process. Boys, for example, were sent into the forest to fend for themselves in an initiatory rite of passage, or girls were accepted into the Red Tent when they were ready to begin the process of womanhood. These moments are marked less clearly in modern society, and this transition is not given the same importance. Likewise, the process of maturation which occurs when we assume responsibility for ourselves is not given as much emphasis these days.

This is ironic because many dearly want to be someone, to be seen, to be accepted, and yet they don’t accept responsibility for themselves. The responsibility that comes through assuming life’s lessons and maturing is largely being ignored.

In the same way, modern society speaks a great deal about freedom and yet the type of freedom that is encouraged is not freedom in its truest sense. We speak about freedom to do what we want, dress as we want, act as we want, but do we truly understand what freedom is? Do we understand that freedom is the choice we make to liberate ourselves from our enchaining patterns and ideas, to make the changes in ourselves so we can become wise and masterful beings?

Many want to be someone, to be seen, to be accepted, and yet they don’t accept responsibility for themselves.

Freedom is something many believe they want, but underneath this, freedom is something many are quietly fearful of. Why is this? How many times have we wished not to have to carry a burden or deal with an issue in life? But then, can we say that we have looked with a magnifying glass at the core of the problem and tried to understand the issue at its roots? To be ‘free’ we must liberate ourselves from the chains that keep us stuck where we are, from past experiences that chain us to emotional patterns, mindsets, and repetitive behaviours. This means we need to take responsibility for our lives, our experiences and even our thoughts. This is something many are scared to take on.

It is harder to look at ourselves and to take each event or the feedback we receive from a situation as a moment of reflection, and ultimately, transformation. It can be really hard to go within and really ask ourselves, ‘Why?’ And so, we develop a subconscious avoidance of meeting the situation deeply. We can literally run away from ourselves and often point the finger in the other direction.

The statement, ‘Whatever doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger’ seems to have aged and maybe retired in our modern society. Fewer people these days seem to take on the challenges like warriors and heroines did, and see each moment as a chance to overcome limitations and to grow.

People have forgotten this truth,” the fox said. “But you mustn’t forget it. You become responsible forever for what you’ve tamed. You’re responsible for your rose.

In Yoga and Tantra, we speak about the Yamas and Niyamas. The morals and ethics of the spiritual path, which form the very backbone of a spiritual existence. Morality does not need to be a boring subject, it is imbued with great wisdom, and is the shining light of a good, vertical and honest life. The Yamas are Satya (truthfulness), Ahimsa (non-violence), Aparigraha (non-possessiveness), Asteya (non-stealing), Brahmacarya (perfect control of energies).

The Niyamas are Santosha (contentment), Saucha (purification), Tapas (austerity), Svadyaya (self-knowledge) and Iswarapranidhana (continuous aspiration for God). By applying these in our actions, speech and even thoughts, we see how our life starts to be shaped into a meaningful one, and we seek to do the best we can in the world. 

Here we can see how the Latin phrase ‘Mea Culpa’, meaning ‘my fault’ or ‘my mistake’, originating from prayers of confession, is firmly placed within living a righteous life. When we take responsibility for our existence, we see how, through the choices that we make, we can start to shape our existence into something admirable – through the conscious application of the Yamas and Niyamas for example.

When we truly forgive someone, we say, ‘mea culpa’, because we acknowledge that there is a lesson for us in the situation and each person has some part to play. When we forgive, being a ‘victim’ no longer exists, as we are empowered and freed to take a higher perspective that unchains us from the event or person in question. Thus, we create space for a new way of being.

In today’s modern society, is true responsibility encouraged?  For example, how easily do people put aside their own values and truths for someone else’s without fully considering the whole picture? We are very willing to embrace so many alternatives, options, perspectives, and yet it can be the hardest thing to look at ourselves and go deep within.

But it is in responsibility that we find the meaning that drives us through life. By taking responsibility to look deeply at ourselves, we put ourselves on the ‘highway’ of Transformation. Running from responsibility, blaming others will only take us further from a true self-knowledge, and the fulfilment of our unique path in life.

What we call our destiny is truly our character and that character can be altered. The knowledge that we are responsible for our actions and attitudes does not need to be discouraging, because it also means that we are free to change this destiny. One is not in bondage to the past, which has shaped our feelings, to race, inheritance, background. All this can be altered if we have the courage to examine how it formed us. We can alter the chemistry provided we have the courage to dissect the elements.

31 August 2022

The Principle of Polarity states that all manifested things have ‘two sides’; ‘two aspects’; ‘two poles; and, ‘everything has its opposite’ with manifold degrees between the two extremes.” – The Kybalion, a text of hermetic wisdom

The study of alchemy and the seven Hermetic Principles of the Universe demonstrates the importance of understanding the Principle of Polarity and how it reflects in the Greater Whole. Polarity is a principle that governs everything in creation, and is  expressed in many other philosophies and traditions, as well as in science.

Polarity is an expression of universal duality. To better understand polarity, it is necessary to begin from the perspective of the universe as a unit that perpetually generates two poles that mutually co-exist. The idea or plan of the universe unfolding in creation is made possible by the constant, dynamic generation of the pairs of opposites. 

In ancient Chinese wisdom the symbol of Yin and Yang, Taijitu, is expressed by a circle divided equally into black and white halves. Each half of the circle contains a spot of the opposite colour. The Yin, the black half, and the Yang, the white half, each represent different qualities.

This symbol shows how opposites are connected and cannot exist without each other. They exist as part of the same whole, and the two opposite characteristics can exist in harmony and complement each other. This last aspect is represented by the soft ‘S’ shape that divides the two halves, rather than a sharp line. The small circles within each half show that nothing is absolute. In all yin, some yang inevitably exists, and vice versa. The outer circle of this symbol represents the entirety of the Universe.

In Hindu mythology, Brahma emerged from the Cosmic Golden Egg and created everything ‘good’ and ‘evil’, and ‘light’ and ‘dark’. In Christian tradition, God also created everything in creation from his single being, and all opposites, good and bad, life and death, flesh and spirit. These pairs are often seen as being separate, but they are actually interwoven as part of a greater whole.

The Tantric Perspective on Polarity

In Tantra it is said that,

“All that exists is a creation of the two complementary principles: masculine and feminine. In Creation, the Supreme becomes Shiva and Shakti, the static and the dynamic aspects of the transcendental Consciousness.”

It is said that the whole universe is sustained by the cosmic lovemaking between Shiva, consciousness or the masculine principle, and Shakti, the energy or feminine principle.

Shiva and Shakti, the cosmic couple, represent archetypal polar opposites: masculine and feminine; yang and yin. Shiva is symbolised by the erect lingam,  or phallus, and Shakti by the all-embracing yoni, or vulva. The lingam and yoni are polar opposites, but at the same time they perfectly complement each other, easily uniting in amorous ecstasy.

In the ancient times, Hermes Trismegistus said:

“The Sun is its father, the moon its mother”

Here he refers to the game of polarity played in nature – a duality that is born from non-duality. The complex game of polarity is an expression of the universal duality. The universe is a unit that constantly generates two poles, and gives birth to all pairs of opposites.

Nature reflects this cosmic perspective; the game between the masculine and feminine is constantly played out in all fauna and flora on this planet, including humans, since time immemorial. At the time of the Kama Sutra the natural game between the masculine and feminine was a vivid part of life. Men and women had distinct and complementary roles, which when united, created a magic both between them and individually.

The Scientific Perspective

According to science, polarity is

“a state or a condition of an atom or a molecule inherent in a body that exhibits opposite properties or powers in opposite parts or directions.”

It is discussed in connection with bonds formed between molecules and atoms because of different electronegativities. In chemistry and physics, a negative pole has the most electrons, while the positive polarity has fewer electrons. Polarity can be easily observed in magnetism and electricity, and can be understood by observing the simple attraction and repulsion between magnets. The plus and minus poles of two magnets attract each other, while the same poles, minus-minus, plus-plus, repel each other.

The Perspective of Alchemy

Within every phenomena or system there are three forces, generally referred to as ‘plus’, ‘minus‘ and ‘neutral’. The first two forces represent opposite poles of any phenomena – positive/negative, light/dark etc. These two poles make up the entire range of possible phenomena. The ‘0’ or neutral or ‘0’ aspect exists at a higher level, and is difficult to perceive as it is beyond the physical and that which can be seen. This neutral (0) aspect exists because of the unity of the two polar aspects i.e., when plus and minus unite, they are perfectly balanced. This neutral (0) aspect unites the polar elements and is considered to be the essential nature of spirit.

Although the creation seems to be very diverse, by understanding the principle of polarity and other principles, we see that this complexity comes from a core of laws that are essentially simple, and which then unfold through different resonance processes.

It can thus be said that from any state of unity, the state of duality and polarity comes. And since nothing in the universe is completely static, the two polarities develop a dynamic character, which manifests as endless variations in creation, such as plus / minus, male / female, hot / cold.

Alongside the alchemists,  science has confirmed, that these polarities are found everywhere, in all levels of creation, from small particles to cosmic bodies, and these are all harmoniously and profoundly connected. They are also inside us. Our body is made of structures of polar alternations vibrating continuously. 

By becoming more conscious, we can begin to recognise the importance of knowing how to harmonise these rhythms or we lose our inner equilibrium, which will also show on the outside in the actions we do.  Thus, we understand, sooner or later, that our personal rhythm is in an intimate natural connection to the Universal rhythms which we come from in fact, and the only way for us to find inner fulfilment is to profoundly tune ourselves in to these Universal Rhythms. But first we need to understand these rhythms which are based on the polar alternations.

When the alchemist understands the principle of polarity, they can understand all their inner processes and will become able to raise or lower their vibrational frequency and tune in, at will, to what is beneficial. By consciously applying the principle of polarity, the alchemist canperform physical, mental, and spiritual alchemy both within his own being, and in the outer environment.

How does the understanding of polarity fit in today’s society?

Men and woman are the clearest examples both of polarity, and the importance of understanding this principle in life. 

Most people in society today can be considered to be out of balance. There is a huge predominance of what can be defined as yin energies in society – creating inertia, lethargy, over sensitivity, greater susceptibility to disease, poor digestion and a lack of motivation. As the embodiment of masculinity, yang-ness, solarity, men should be more yang, and less yin, but men are also prone to excessive yin-ness. This imbalance is due to many factors such as poor diet – the overuse of refined sugar, processed food, preservatives and chemicals in food, and environmental determinants, such as electromagnetic fields, plastic and other pollution, hybrid crops and ignoring the natural circadian rhythm. Excessive yin-ness can be counterbalanced by amplifying its opposite – solarity and yang-ness. This will bring more centredness, dynamism, verticality, and much more emotional balance, as well as greater physical and mental health overall.

It is also necessary for women to amplify their yang-ness, despite their being the embodiment of yin, to balance the prevailing amount of yin energy within their inner universe. If excessive yin is not polarised by yang, it can lead to the issues described above, including emotional rollercoasters and a lack of direction and harmony.

The game of polarity is a secret key to happiness in a couple relationship, keeping attraction and passion alive.

When yin and yang are completely balanced in either a man or woman, a very special state of consciousness known as the glorious androgynal state awakens, that is connected to the zero point, or neutral state, the plus and minus uniting in perfect balance. The androgynal state very much enlivens and awakens the spiritual power of the being.

The game of polarity is also a secret key to happiness in a couple relationship, keeping attraction and passion alive. As weak magnets will have a weak attraction to each other, strong magnets can attract each other even from a distance, and unite with a much greater force. The attraction in a couple is also due to the strength of the opposite polarity between them. The stronger the masculine and feminine energies in the couple, the stronger the attraction between them. When strong masculine meets strong feminine, sparks fly.Human beings are very complex however. Each of us have a little part of the opposite pole within, just as in the yin-yang symbol there is a small circle of the opposite in each side. Thus, when a woman truly relaxes in her femininity and a man feels at ease in his masculinity, it is much easier to find fulfilment in the relationship. 

Ways in which individual polarity can be balanced

  • The practice of Yoga – Hatha Yoga means the ‘union of sun and moon’, the sun being the masculine, yang, emissive aspect, and moon the feminine, yin, receptive aspect. The union of these two poles reflects the middle way. Many Yoga postures as they are practised in this school work on directly balancing both the Yin and Yang aspects  of the different levels of the practitioner.
  • Vira and Shakti groups – At Tara Yoga Centre, we run groups especially for women, called Shakti groups, and for men,  called Vira groups, where spiritual notions and practices that are directly related to the feminine and masculine are explored, for the purposes of personal growth and transformation.
  • Rest well – Sleeping sufficiently and early increases yang energies.
  • Exercise – Exercising causes deeper breathing, making the body more yang.
  • The practice of erotic amorous continence – Practising erotic amorous continence with love and transfiguration, and separating orgasm from ejaculation amplifies yang energies.
  • Reduced exposure to Electromagnetic fields – Electromagnetic fields amplify yin.
  • Reduced Stress – Stress has a very yin effect on the body, depleting us of vital nutrients and damaging the system, leading to degeneration.

Final Thoughts

The Principle of Polarity is an essential principle to understand and apply in order to support our spiritual growth. By observing this principle in all aspects of our life we can reach a state of balance and harmony that is essential for true spiritual awakening, empowerment and the revelation of our Godly Nature.

30 August 2022

The discovery of quantum physics in the last few decades has redefined the way we view the universe and has forever changed the face of science. Interestingly, many of the theories proposed in quantum physics resemble key concepts from ancient spiritual systems, providing us with parallels as to the way reality is represented and understood.

For modern spiritual practitioners, these parallels are a testament to the wisdom of ancient spiritual traditions, especially traditions such as yoga and tantra, where we find complex, detailed and complete descriptions of the nature of reality and the fundamental principles and universal laws that govern creation. In particular, they provide explanations as to the nature of our relationship as conscious beings to the world in which we exist.

Various spiritual traditions include descriptions of extraordinary concepts such as parallel dimensions, subtle realities that exist beyond the material world, and fundamental formative fields and energetic structures that provide matrices for the unfolding and organisation of energy and matter. 

They also include notions about the essential role of consciousness within creation. Many of these concepts do not fit into the paradigm of classical physics – the physics that describes our everyday reality, governed mostly by mechanistic laws such as Newton’s laws of motion, gravity and energy preservation. 

A similar situation also exists between quantum physics and classical physics,  where there seems to be one set of rules for the quantum world and another for classical physics, and the two do not reconcile. This relationship goes both ways – not only can the discoveries of quantum physics be seen to validate the concepts of spiritual systems, but the world view of spiritual systems can provide a completely different framework that can allow a deeper understanding and explanation of the extraordinary concepts of the quantum world, even providing answers to some of the greatest scientific challenges of today.

Unity within Diversity

Progress in theoretical physics during the past decade has led to a progressively more unified understanding of the laws of nature and of theories which point towards a fundamental unity behind the observable reality. The universe appears to us as being extraordinarily complex and diverse, but it is fundamentally unified. Such theories identify a single universal, unified field at the basis of all forms and phenomena in the universe.

The feeling of unity beneath life’s diversity, is also a central theme of every major spiritual tradition. While our everyday experience tells us that we are separate from one another and distinct from all the forms of reality that we interact with, altered states of consciousness, such as those experienced in profound meditative states reveal that at some fundamental level, we are united with each other and with all of reality. The practice of profound meditation allows one to withdraw from the outwardly directed perception of the world through the senses, to experience deeper levels of mind and stillness, to move even beyond thought and mental activity and to experience the universal unity that lies at the basis of existence. By so doing, we can have direct access to the unified field as theorised by quantum physicists.

The universe appears to us as being extraordinarily complex and diverse, but it is fundamentally unified. 

Another phenomenon in the quantum world that is in line with the idea of unity within diversity can be seen in quantum entanglement. In classical physics there are constants that can never be broken, such as the relationship between mass and energy – the result of which means that nothing can travel faster than the speed of light. However, in the quantum world, two particles can be connected in such a way that information can be shared instantly between them, regardless of distance. This is known as quantum entanglement. When two particles become entangled, they remain connected even when separated by vast distances. Entanglement can also occur between millions of particles and is thought to take place throughout nature, and within the atoms and molecules in living species. When hundreds of particles become entangled, they act as one unified object. These so-called many-body entangled systems describe a network of entanglement. If we also consider the big bang theory of creation, which states that the entire universe emerged from a single point of super condensed energy, then literally everything in existence has one, single united source.

 Here we can draw a parallel to a Tantric vision of reality – the existence of an underlying fabric or network of connections, that unites all the apparently separate aspects of reality. A central tenet of Tantra is that of non-duality, the recognition that underlying the multiplicity and diversity of experience there is a single, infinite and indivisible reality, the nature of which is pure consciousness. All the apparently separate aspects of creation are ultimately an expression of that one Ultimate Reality.

Role of the observer

One of the key notions in quantum physics relates to the unusual properties of subatomic elements. At the subatomic level we see that the building blocks of matter are not so solid and well defined as we might expect. Subatomic elements exist as fields of probability rather than as defined particles located in known space and time. Moreover, we find that it is the process of observation or measurement of that quantum state that defines that state  – so until it is measured the particle exists in a state of superimposition, where it exists in many states at once. Before it is observed, the particle of matter is not actually a particle, but an abstract probability wave – it does not have a real physical state but exists only as the possible outcome of a future measurement. When the measurement takes place, the quantum probability wave collapses to a localised particle, and becomes an object of conscious experience.

This is an interpretation of quantum behaviour known as the Copenhagen interpretation. It reveals an important aspect – that there is a relationship between the act of observation of a conscious observer and the existence of physical matter. If consciousness is so inextricably linked to matter, then from the scientific perspective, we can no longer ignore its influence.

The role of the observer in spirituality is a central aspect. Upon deep enquiry into the nature of our outer experience with the empirical world and with the inner experience of our own being, fundamental questions arise: ‘Who is the one that is aware of this experience now?’ ‘Who is the subject of our perception and observation of our inner and outer reality?’ ‘What is the observed and who is the observer?’

In Tantric philosophy, the waking experience involves three components, the Subject – the one that observes, the Object – that which is observed, and the Act of observation or perception. These appear to be separate and distinct, but this is only because we see them through the prism of the mind. In reality, they are all one – the Subject, Object and Act of observation are simply the consciousness fixing itself on the different components that constitute reality. In this context, consciousness is observing the object, but it is also observing the subject – the one who perceives.

In a deep meditative state, this threefold structure of the waking experience — the observer, the observed and the process of observation — are reunited into one indivisible wholeness of pure consciousness.

Parallel worlds and dimensions

Another interpretation of the particle-wave duality of nature is called the Many Worlds Interpretation. This theory states that the collapse of the probability wave when it is observed, never really happens, and that the wave function is the only true nature of reality. When the wave is observed we become aware of one reality, however, all other possibilities continue to exist as alternative worlds. Many, perhaps infinite worlds exist, all with different quantum outcomes. And this occurs in every moment – so frequently that the rate is practically infinite. In this vision, the wave function is the complete picture of reality and our measurement i.e., our conscious experience of the observable world, is just a fraction of it.

In addition to multiple worlds, each world contains multiple dimensions. String theory, a leading theory in quantum physics, proposes that a particle is actually made of tiny strings of vibrating energy. The way a string vibrates determines what type of particle it is. However, for this theory to be true, the existence of multiple dimensions is required, because the strings need more than just three dimensions to express all their vibrational patterns. For the mathematics of string theory to be consistent, there must be ten different dimensions of space-time! 

String theory, a leading theory in quantum physics, proposes that a particle is actually made of tiny strings of vibrating energy.

These notions are not unlike what we find in Hindu cosmology, for example, that there are innumerable universes besides this one, and that the Supreme Universal Consciousness manifests in each and every one. More than this, each universe is made up of multiple dimensions of reality, so that existence is not just made up of the physical world that we perceive through the senses, but there are other subtle worlds, made of vibrational frequencies that are outside the range of the senses.

In Vedic philosophy the description of the Universe consists of three main worlds: the physical, the astral and the causal world, each of which is considered to be a distinct plane of existence defined by their vibrational frequency. The physical world is the dense world of solid reality that is perceived by the five senses. The astral world is the world of thought and subtle forms, and the causal world is the blissful realm of truth. The subtle realms of the astral and the causal worlds are further divided into different worlds, or planes of existence known as the upper or paradisiacal worlds, and the lower or infernal worlds. The yogic system also includes specific techniques that allow the practitioner to explore these subtle dimensions. With sufficient training, the yogi can perform conscious, astral projections, allowing a direct experience of the subtle worlds.

Everything is Energy

One highly significant revelation of the exploration into the subatomic world is that everything is made up of energy. At the most fundamental level there are quantum fields, and everything emerges from both fluctuations within and / or interactions between those fields.

We find the same essential notion expressed as a fundamental principle in various spiritual systems such as the Western esoteric tradition of Hermeticism, and the ancient system of Tantra. The traditional Tantric vision says that the entire manifestation is made up of energy in vibration, from the lowest vibration that characterises all phenomena that appear in the physical universe, to the highest frequencies specific to the world of spirit. 

This vibratory phenomenon is defined in Yoga in a universal principle called the Law of Resonance. This law describes the vibratory nature of existence, that all objects, beings, and phenomena are defined by their frequency of vibration. From this perspective everything can be understood in terms of the interactions between systems of resonance. Even complex phenomena such as human emotion, knowledge or states of consciousness can be defined and understood as specific resonances. All the various forms of yogic practice then, from bodily postures to breathing techniques and forms of meditation, are in reality methods of tuning into specific frequencies of vibration that exist in the universe.

There are also many enigmatic aspects of reality that have not yet been fully included in current scientific models. In order to explain the functioning of the universe it is necessary to take into account the presence of so-called dark matter and dark energy as well as anti-particles or anti-matter. 

According to the standard model of cosmology, the composition of the universe is made up of only around 5% ordinary matter, the rest being made up of 27% dark matter, and 68% dark energy. This tells us that there are still many mysteries to be discovered and included in our quest to complete the current models of reality. In the Tantric vision, these mysterious facets of creation, yet unexplainable by modern science, can be understood in terms of resonance, as energies with specific, enigmatic, vibrational frequencies.

Final thoughts

The parallels between quantum physics and the concepts found in the wise visions of universal spirituality outlined in this article provide a glimpse into the enigmatic way in which science and spirituality can be united and support each other.

A special feature of the courses offered in this spiritual school is to approach spiritual practice in a scientific way, that is, to understand the theory expressed as principles and mechanisms, to use known methods to experiment with the specific concepts, and to validate these truths and realities via direct experience.

The models of reality offered by both modern science, in particular quantum physics, combined with those offered by ancient spiritual traditions, as well as the direct experience of these models through individual and collective spiritual practice, can greatly assist in bringing us to a deeper, more essential understanding of reality and of ourselves.

29 August 2022

The paths of Yoga and Tantra are not confined only to the yoga mat, meditation cushion or a certain time or place. Through the practice of these disciplines, it becomes possible to live every moment of life according to spiritual principles, and to find sacredness and spiritual insight in the midst of ‘ordinary’ life. The practice of consecration is a very simple but highly effective method of the Yoga and Tantra paths, providing a fundamental key to make every moment of life sacred, and integrated in the universal harmony.  

Yogic and Tantric wisdom states that we do not need to be a priest, a sadhu or a saint to reach the Supreme Absolute, or God, and we do not need an intermediary. We can contact this Absolute Reality directly, and we can do this here and now, through every action we perform and in the fullness of our heart. The consecration is not a religious act. It can be performed by anyone, and requires no previous spiritual training.

Living a sacred life

Consecration means to offer, totally and unconditionally, any action that is about to be done, as well as the fruit or the results of that action, to God, to the Supreme Absolute Consciousness, or to the Highest aspect of reality that is easiest to relate to. As well as an action, it is also possible to consecrate an object, food, or even one’s own being to the Universal Consciousness.

The word ‘consecration’ comes from the Latin ‘consecrare’, meaning to sanctify, to make sacred, or dedicate to God. Consecrating any action thus makes that action a sacred act. If, for example, the action of walking to work is consecrated before setting out, the walk, and everything that is experienced during that action becomes imbued with a divine presence, as if God walks with us,  in and through our being.

By consecrating all actions, the practitioner can discover that in the heart of every beneficial action there is a possibility to enter in a state of mysterious communion with God. The Divine is then no longer a far-off reality, but something that can easily be approached through this method. 

Moreover, each act of consecration is a chance to experience a state of immortality, a feeling for a few moments of what it is like to be a jivanmukta, or a liberated master.

Becoming a godly channel

When a beneficial action is consecrated, that action is no longer done by an individual being with all his or her limitations. Through the consecration, the practitioner is opened to become a channel in and through which God can then manifest, through which he or she can become inspired, guided and directed by the Divine. If, for instance, the fruit of the action of giving a healing massage is first consecrated, the practitioner can observe the way in which he or she is guided and inspired to offer exactly what is needed in that moment, in ways that may otherwise not have been considered.

The consecration is a gesture in which the presence of God is invited into one’s being, and there is an acceptance of His help and support.

Consecration implies both a sacrifice that takes the practitioner beyond the limited self, the ego, and a surrendering to the guidance of a superior, godly wisdom. The consecration is a gesture in which the presence of God is invited into one’s being, and there is an acceptance of His help and support. This brings far more inner resources and energy than usual, and an alignment with the Supreme. Living, in a way, as God does, He can be known far more intimately.

Here it can also be understood why it is said that Tantrics make love ‘like gods and goddesses’. Through consecrating the lovemaking itself, each of the lovers open to become a channel of godly love to manifest through their beings, as they each offer themselves completely to the game of love. Through this gesture, lovemaking becomes a sublime and sacred act, which elevates the lovers to reach ecstatic states of communion with God.

A method to always be integrated in the universal harmony

After the consecration is done, there is an awareness phase, in which the practitioner waits for a few moments to a perceive an answer from the Supreme Reality.

This is a key element of the consecration. This answer appears as a state of sacredness and grace that flows into the being from the top of the head. When a subtle, affirmative answer is perceived, the practitioner can be sure that the fruit of the action he or she is about to perform has been received, and that the action is supported by the Divine.

If no answer is perceived, however, the action is not integrated. Either it is not beneficial for the one consecrating or for anyone else involved, or it is simply not the right moment to carry out that action,  and it should not be performed. If there is no answer to the consecration and the effects do not appear, the action will not be aligned with the universal harmony. The consecration is therefore an excellent method to ‘check’, to ensure that there is always an alignment with actions that are beneficial, and that there is always an integration in the universal flow of life.

Karma Yoga

Consecration is considered to be the foundation of the system of Karma Yoga – the path of reaching spiritualliberation through action. The act of consecration frees the practitioner from the chains of karma, which bind us to return again and again to reincarnate in this world.

A fundamental key in this regard is that through consecration, all the fruit or results of an action are offered to the Supreme Absolute.Ordinarily, when an action is done, karma is created – whatever results from that action, whether good or bad. Even if something very beneficial is done, such as helping a great many people, the ‘doer’ of that action or series of actions will still need to reincarnate to enjoy the good karma that they generated. From a spiritual perspective, the soul of that individual will be almost forever trapped in the endless cycle of death and rebirth, unless they are able to free themselves from those karmic chains.

By offering the fruit of all actions to God, those actions no longer belong to the doer. This is a sacrifice that is made, because the action is no longer done only for oneself, but as an offering to the Supreme Absolute. There must be a sincere intention to offer everything that will be done to God, in a state of openness and humbleness. In return, the practitioner receives the immense grace of a sacred life, as well as a state of inner freedom, freed from any attachment to the results of the actions. 

The method for performing the consecration is taught in our Yoga, Tantra and Kashmir Shaivism courses.

24 August 2022

“Woman created the Universe. She is indeed the very body of the Universe.

Woman is the foundation of all three worlds. She is the essence of our body.

There exists no other happiness but that bestowed by Woman.

There exists no other Path but that which can be opened by Woman.

There has not been, there is not, and there will never be

Neither yesterday, nor today nor tomorrow

Any other treasure superior to the Woman,

Neither kingdom, nor pilgrimage place, nor Yoga, nor prayer

Nor mantra, nor asceticism, nor bigger plenitude

But that offered by the Woman” – Shaktisangama Tantra, II, 52

There is a stir in the air, a subtle awakening, a breeze of anticipation that has stood the test of time, despite a persistent effort to suppress it. This stir, this force of love and life was revered in the ancient cultures, and especially within the Tantric Tradition.

The Tantrics worship and adore ‘Shakti’, in Sanskrit the ‘feminine power’, ‘force of nature’ or ‘energy’. Shakti is the personification of the primordial feminine energy. She embodies the force of realisation of Brahman, being the dynamic feminine aspect of God, the feminine nourishing vitality that allows Brahman to create all that exists, to preserve or maintain everything, and to make everything disappear.

Tantric tradition states, “Shiva, without Shakti, is Shava”, with Shava being a dead body, and, Shakti without Shiva is Kalila, or chaos, confusion, meaningless existence, Kachakula, the upheaval of values, rejection, and Maya, or illusion, disorder, entropy”.

The important union of Shiva and Shakti is symbolised by the Yoni and Lingam, which can be seen throughout India in the form of statues of the Shivalinga, and depicted in many works of art. The force of the consciousness, Shiva, would be powerless without the All-Embracing Energy of Shakti, sustaining and giving life to everything. In Christianity, it is also said that “No one can reach God the Father but through the Holy Spirit”, and the Holy Spirit is defined as God’s power to create and manifest everything in the world, which is the very definition of Shakti in Tantra. Beautifully, Shakti is interwoven in both traditions, showing her Universality.

Hence, the Tantrics placed huge importance on Shakti, or the Enigmatic Feminine Force. Especially as Shaktiis the energy that sustains everything, her value is unique and of supreme importance. Imagine a life without energy. Without her sustaining breath, it would indeed be a grey and lifeless world. We can see this in the revolution that occurs in a man’s life when Shakti comes to his doorstep. Opening the curtains, painting the walls, nourishing everything with her heart full of love, and thus bringing in the Sun, the source of Light and Life. As Tantra celebrates life and the conscious use of the energies, it is very natural that the Tantrics would revere Shakti, offering her the central position in their spirituality, honouring her value and worth.

Shakti is also the great initiatress, unlocking the hidden mysteries in the heart of those to whom she is connected.

Shakti exists in all women, and so within Tantra, all women are revered for their important role and the blessing that they shower upon life. And although Shakti is present in all women, her qualities may require an awakening through her spiritual practice. This is the awakening of the ‘State of Shakti’. As a woman brings this unique state of consciousness into her being, her spiritual force can be felt, and she is granted a mysterious initiating power, which awakens spirituality in others. Shakti is thus also the great Initiatress, unlocking the hidden mysteries in the Heart of those to whom she is connected, taking them out of the limitations of the physical world into the mysterious world of what is beyond.

In these difficult times, and more than ever, we need the Power of Shakti, the all-embracing Mother, to heal and unite. The Tantrics recognise and embrace her presence in their lives, unlike other groups within society both past and present, that have misunderstood, blamed, and even mistreated women. The modern world has pushed the awakening of the divine femininity into a shadowy corner, but she cannot hide there – it is impossible. In her radiance, she offers her abundant love and gives tirelessly.

Shakti can open the road for the next epoch, for Satya Yuga – the Age of truth.

The Tantric Spiritual Woman has an important mission in this present time. Her role is paramount in guiding humanity to a new way, to a superior stage. Through her nourishing energy, her power to give life and her connection to the Divine, she can open the road for the next epoch, for Satya Yuga – the Age of truth. Through being an example of spiritual aspiration, with a bold and unshakable faith, a loving heart, the ability to form close female bonds and connect with a sisterhood, as she recognises the Eternal Feminine in other women, and the huge humbleness that manifests from the heart of a spiritual woman, she can be a force to reckon with.

In today’s consumer society, blinded by superficial, horizontal tendencies, women are looked upon without seeing them. Many are unable to contemplate women, and to perceive the sacredness that women embody. Tantra teaches us to see profoundly, to transfigure women and truly recognise the role that she has in the world. But at the same time, Woman must learn to know and embrace her own greatness, and to assume this role with humility. This becomes possible when she embraces her spiritual heart, and aspires to live her life full of love and sacredness.

When a woman chooses to take on this role, she recognises her own qualities and her own limitations, and she aspires to transform herself. She challenges herself to step beyond her own mental constructs and limitations into a world where her heart lives freedom. Here the mystical essence of Eros and the pure cantation of love blossom like wild roses on the tree of delight.

Then, through her, we will feel every aspect of our lives touched by the sweetness and mystery she inspires.

by Magdalena Hau, Yoga & Tantra Teacher

16 August 2022

A Sacred Place Amongst the Hubbub

For centuries people had to undertake difficult and often dangerous journeys in search of monasteries and ashrams on distant mountain tops or on remote islands surrounded by treacherous seas. The spiritual devotee needed to remove themselves from the temptations of the world to dedicate themselves to the pursuit of perfection. Now you can hop on a bus to an Ashram, a sanctuary amongst all the buzz and busy-ness of the city.

So why would anyone choose to spend time in an Ashram? The answer is that it provides a sanctuary and a place to lay down burdens, and it provides a kind of ‘fortress’ for the spirit. Being in an ashram super-charges your spiritual energy using the challenges of daily life as rocket fuel to launch your spiritual practice and aspiration. You are embraced and held by the others who live there who share your values and principles, who join you in study and practice and they can also provide powerful iron-girder support so you may further transform without buckling under the pressure.

Being in an ashram super-charges your spiritual energy using the challenges of daily life as rocket fuel to launch your spiritual practice and aspiration.

The world can be a confusing place, with your attention pulled in so many directions, snippets of news, messages, posts, opinions, problems. You can be constantly distracted, uncertain. You can find yourself reacting through lack of attention, wasting your time, money, and energy. Society values the winners of the rat race – but who wants to be a rat?

Our ancestors knew a thing or two, and they created sanctuaries, monasteries and churches at ancient sacred sites. Sacredness in daily life may have been trampled by the march of progress, first with the industrial then the technological revolution, but sacredness can be brought back into everyday life by living in an Ashram. A gathering of spiritual people in one place will always create an accumulation of spiritual energy. In addition, it is not always easy alone, to bring consistency, discipline and rigour to your practice. The Ashram can be a place of safety where you can accelerate your growth with fellow practitioners and in the times, with heartfelt embraces. You can have a life and evolve spiritually at the same time.

What makes an Ashram a special place is the practice of Karma Yoga – the yoga of communion with God through action.

What also makes an Ashram a special place is the practice of Karma Yoga – the yoga of communion with the godly, through all the actions that you carry out in a perfectly detached way, realising that you are a channel of energy and not the author or the originator of the impulse to act.

The Ashram is intended to be a pressure cooker that creates spiritual intensity that forces the ego out of its hiding places. You learn to be relaxed while in the middle of any action, and not attached, including in situations in which in the past may have been excessively challenging. Fellow yogis in the Ashram are there to help you, and you to help them, not just because you are good people, but because you are linked to each other by your devotion to creating the highest possible spiritual outcomes in all life situations.

12 August 2022

by Maria Porsfelt, Yoga & Tantra Teacher

“The bad stuff is easier to believe. You ever notice that?” – Pretty Woman (1990)

Have you ever noticed how the ‘bad stuff’ is easier to believe? And how when you are ‘too happy’ you start to look for what might go wrong? Have you noticed how we often think we are being realistic if we look at something in a negative way? It is said that a pessimist always calls himself a realist. This actually expresses a psychological truth – that the ‘bad stuff’ IS easier to believe, and even attracts our attention more than good feelings and experiences do. This is called negative bias.

Studies have shown that negative news is more likely to be perceived as truthful. And as negative information draws greater attention, it can also be seen as having greater validity. This might be why bad news seems to garner more attention, and we only need to look at news headlines over any given week to know that the latter is true. Drama and scandal make the most delicious gossip.

Focusing on the whereabouts of local predators or enemies was much more important for staying safe than looking at the beauty of the flowers or a rainbow.

We all want to be happy, so why do we seem to look for the negative, and for reasons to feel bad? The explanation has a lot to do with evolution – or lack thereof, depending on the perspective! Keeping an eye out for possible dangers and threats was very useful for our cave dwelling ancestors, and was most likely a condition for survival. Focusing on the whereabouts of local predators or enemies was much more important for staying safe than looking at the beauty of the flowers or a rainbow.

Like the pain response, dwelling on negativity is a way of keeping us safe. And while we no longer need to be on constant high alert as our early ancestors needed to be to survive, negativity bias still has a starring role in the way our brains operate. Research has shown that negative bias can have a wide variety of effects on how people think, respond, and feel.

The amygdala uses about two-thirds of its neurons to look for bad news.

Negative emotions rouse the amygdala, the almond-shaped brain structure that psychologist Rick Hansen calls, “the alarm bell of your brain.” The amygdala uses about two-thirds of its neurons to look for bad news. Once it sounds the alarm, negative events and experiences are stored in the memory very quickly, in contrast to positive events and experiences, which usually need to be held in the awareness for twelve seconds or more before they are transferred from short-term memory buffers to long-term storage.

Not only do negative experiences imprint on our memory more easily, they also linger longer than positive ones. Generally, we are more likely to dwell on a negative comment or event than we are to take in a compliment or remember the details of a happy event. This negative bias can mean that you focus entirely on a negative aspect, even if the positive is equally or even predominantly present. You might spend a beautiful day with your family or your beloved, but in the end you remember the day mostly because of that one comment they made that bothered you.

To a large extent, emotions make up our life experience.

Research also suggests that negative bias influences the motivation to complete a task. People have less motivation if the incentive is framed as a means to gain something, than when the same incentive will help them avoid losing something. This can play a role in our motivation to pursue a goal. You are more likely to dwell on what you might have to give up to achieve that goal, or simply feel pushed by a threat of loss in your daily activities, than focus on what you will gain if you keep working towards something, or be inspired by the positive effects that achieving that goal will bring.

To a large extent, emotions make up our life experience. Imagine your life without emotions – seeing a beautiful view or having interactions with the most important people in your life with no emotional response. Emotions transform our world from a series of objective conceptual facts into a living, breathing experience, bringing us joy, sadness, longing, anger, laughter, and love. Emotions bring meaning to our life experiences, and are an important part of what it is to be human. But emotions can of course also be difficult and tormenting, making life very challenging.

…it is very important to become aware of negative bias and to counteract its effects.

With the meaning and depth the emotions you experience bring to your life, they also shape the way you relate to different people and events. Negative bias influences your relationships and your decision making. In relationships, for instance, you will expect the worst of the other, and you will focus on their flaws and mistakes. When making decisions that are influenced by negativity bias we will tend to focus excessively on potential risks, even if the chances for a positive outcome is greater, and then we can lose many great opportunities for filling life with more happiness and abundance.

Considering the huge impact it can have on our quality of life, on our experiences and the choices we make, it is very important to become aware of negative bias and to counteract its effects. And the good news is we can do something to counteract this tendency, that otherwise gains extra power because of its unconscious nature. Thankfully, any habit can be broken, even if it implies a negative attitude or perspective.

How to counter negative bias

  • Bring awareness to the ways in which you allow negative bias to impact your life
  • Learn to let your attention linger on the positive aspects for longer, so that they transfer to ‘long-term storage’. This requires patience and repetition, as the physiological part of the rewiring takes about 45 days, so consistency is key.
  • Remember you have a choice. It’s important to realise how much agency you have in letting bad comments stick with you or not. Eleanor Roosevelt famously said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Refuse to consent to feeling inferior!
  • Be attentive to how you talk to yourself. Our inner dialogue is often very negative. Speak to yourself with the same kindness you would afford a friend.
  • In your love relationships make an effort to notice and acknowledge the positive qualities and actions of your beloved, and really savour the beautiful moments.
  • In your daily activities focus on and empower positive reasons that inspire you in your actions.
  • Make an effort to be at least as interested in success stories and positive news as you are in negative ones.

In time, cultivating these attitudes will create a huge shift in how you perceive life and yourself. From a certain perspective it can be said that emotions are about evolution – biologically and spiritually. Emotions bring our attention to different situations or attitudes. But also profound emotions are said to connect us to our soul, being an expression of our soul, and thus they allow us to discover who we are on a deeper level. But we need to be more aware of our emotions to shift from biological bias to the deep free expression of our soul, to connect to a more authentic way of being.

10 August 2022

“A gram of practise is worth tonnes of theory.”

When properly assimilated, knowledge becomes wisdom, and we can start to see the changes such knowledge makes in our lives. We cannot simply touch knowledge on the surface, and then walk away from it imbued with deep understandings. No one can tell you how something is – you can only feel a deep understanding if it really moves in you. You need to taste it, digest it, and then allow its sweet nutritious value to seep into the soul of your being.

I can tell you how I make the most delicious cake in the world, but unless you savour it, you will never know how the cake is. And only when you really know how to make that cake, will you value its true worth.

From this perspective, the Yogis and Tantrics encourage spiritual practice as an important tool for individual evolution. It is an experiential path, not one of only reading books. Through practice and your own transformation, the knowledge becomes alive in your being, and the wisdom will sooner or later reside in your heart. If knowledge stays only as a sterile experience without living it, then it will stay on the surface and not echo and reverberate deeply within you. The teachings are guidance, but the most important ingredient is their actual use in life.

If knowledge stays only as a sterile experience without living it, then it will stay on the surface and not echo and reverberate deeply within you.

When we put in practice what we learn, we begin an eternal romance with transformation. We live in love with sadhana, with spiritual practice, we can clearly see when we easily slip into bad habits, and we learn to apply spiritual attitudes in daily life. We start to become truly independent as we know what we need to do and when, and we have the knowledge awakened within to live our lives aligned with universal principles and profound understandings.

Through practice we invite Divinity into our lives in an active way. Through practice we make our lives more sacred as we make a conscious attempt to turn the light on inside. No one can tell you what to think or how things are and make it truly believable. Deep understanding happens when we learn from our own direct experience. You need to see the results from the clinical trials of your life and your own experience.

We can learn a lot from children. They seek with a playful curiosity, and they learn from whatever they touch and see. Life unfolds during play, and they learn in their openness. In a similar way, by applying an open and non-sceptical attitude we can ‘see for ourselves’ the value of the teachings and be inspired by them.

With our hearts aspiring for true freedom, through practice we liberate the soul. By enthusiastically applying what we learn, we discover how the deepening of knowledge takes us beyond the limitations and inertia that can contain and restrict us. We see that through practice we become the connoisseur of active love in life, and each experience enriches our Heart, into the limitless freedom of our eternal nature. Through practice, we become aware of a freedom that can inspire our daily lives, that is truly authentic.

by Magdalena Hau, Tantra and Yoga teacher